We were away over the holidays in Southern Ontario, visiting the grandparents. While we were away, we got a massive dumping of snow up here – two big storms that dropped I don’t know, at least 30 centimeters in our driveway.
Aside: The van was JAM PACKED with stuff, so I was trying to keep the footwear down to just one choice, and when we were leaving I was waffling between the Frankenboots, which are the key to my survival of Ottawa winters, or my cute little ankle boots that I usually only wear on snow-free days in November and April. Sir Monkeypants said, “We’re going to Toronto, it’s not like here. You do realize that my sister and her husband do not even OWN boots, they just wear shoes all winter long, don’t you?”
Plus, my mother was super keen to take the kids sledding while we were visiting, but it continued to be completely green and sunny and warm in Cambridge, so although she kept saying, “We’re supposed to get snow tomorrow!” cheerfully for like, the 10 days straight leading up to Christmas, it seemed pretty certain that there would be no snow there, ever.
So of course I went with the ankle boots, and of course there was a freakish, enormous dumping of snow in both Cambridge and Toronto, and my feet froze and all my socks were wet and let’s not even TALK about the attempt at sledding in substandard boots, which brought new meaning to the word BITCHFACE.
Anyway! It snowed a lot over the holidays, is what I’m saying.
So we’re driving back home, after a lovely lunch with my littlest sister and her wee tiny new baby, and it’s getting dark, and late. The kids are tired and cranky, Sir Monkeypants’ back is aching from hour after hour of sitting in the driver’s seat, and we start to fret about what state the driveway will be in when we get home. At the least, it’s sure to have a foot of snow in it, with a nice icy wall of snowplow droppings along the bottom.
We figured we’d never be able to get the van in, but we couldn’t leave it out on the street with all the stuff in it and the possibility of more snowplow action, so we tried really hard to psyche ourselves up for the massive shoveling job that awaited us at home. I was resigned to the idea of climbing over snowbanks and wading through knee-deep snow in my friggin’ ANKLE BOOTS, with one sleepy kid in each arm.
And then, pulling into our street…around the bend…there’s our house…THE HEAVENS OPENED UP AND THE ANGELS SANG.
Someone had cleared out our driveway for us! HUGEST. FAVOUR. EVER.
I still can’t believe how awesome that was. I almost cried from relief, and I think I saw Sir Monkeypants wiping a tear away too. We even passed others on our street that were still trying to dig out, and it looked awful, heavy and chunky and icy, and I felt guilty enough about having ours cleared for us that I could have gone help them out, except that we were so exhausted I was barely able to do more than crawl inside, throw the kids in bed, then sink into a coma on the couch 10 minutes later.
Turns out it was our backyard neighbours who cleared it – King and Queen Charming, and their daughter Princess Charming, who is in Gal Smiley’s class. They walked around the corner with their snowblower, and then when the other neighbours around saw them, everyone who was outside at the time came over to help break up the snowplow bits at the bottom, and to help shovel the walkway. THEY SHOVELED THE WALKWAY.
December was kind of a hard month, in terms of faith in humanity and wondering what the HELL was up with the world. But this one thing, this enormous kindness, has turned things around for me, given me real tender feelings towards the human race and the Earth in general and man, I just want to hug everyone and hand out free pie.
It’s going to be a great year.